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Projects with Promise

Vol. 17 No. 4

Campus Corps Therapeutic Mentoring: Making a Difference for Mentors

December 12, 2013


College student mentors are increasingly mentoring at-risk youth, yet little is known about the benefits that college students derive from their experience mentoring within the context of a service-learning course. This qualitative study used focus groups to examine college students’ experiences as participants in a unique program, Campus Corps: Therapeutic Mentoring of At-Risk Youth. This course-based, service-learning program utilizes college student mentors to mentor at-risk youth within a family systems framework. In 19 focus groups conducted with 141 college student participants, the student mentors indicated that they experienced significant personal growth and professional development through their participation in the program and that the program positively influenced their civic attitudes and their orientation toward civic engagement. This article provides a review of related research, describes the program, explores the findings of the focus groups, and discusses implications for college service-learning programs.